Interventions designed to increase psychological flexibility have been shown to reduce mental health stigma, and such interventions have shown to be effective in athletic populations. The current study assessed the relationship between athletic identity and mental health stigma while also observing the moderating effects of psychological flexibility within that relationship. An exploratory analysis was also conducted to observe the moderating effect of psychological flexibility on the relationship between athletic identity and barriers to care. Participants (N = 176) from online sport-themed communities completed measures to assess mental health stigma, barriers to care, athletic identity, current symptoms of distress, social desirability, and psychological flexibility. Findings showed that athletic identity and mental health stigma were positively related. Psychological inflexibility was positively related to mental health stigma, barriers to care, and current symptoms of distress. However, psychological flexibility did not significantly moderate the relationship between athletic identity and mental health stigma. Psychological flexibility also did not significantly moderate the relationship between athletic identity and barriers to care. Applied implications and future directions for research are discussed.
Year manuscript completed
Year degree awarded
Stigma, Barriers to care, Athletic Identity, Psychological Flexibility
Hollingsworth, Brighton Claire, "FLEXIBILITY IN THE BRAIN AND MUSCLES: EXAMINING PSYCHOLOGICAL FLEXIBILITY, ATHLETIC IDENTITY, AND STIGMA WITHIN SPORT CULTURE" (2019). Murray State Theses and Dissertations. 147.